National Bus Safety Week

You’re driving to work when you see a school bus up ahead with its stop sign out and its red lights flashing. You come to a stop and watch as students board the bus. 

Stopping for a school bus may seem like common sense. However, during the 2019-2020 school year, Sycamore Police Department records show there were 13 investigations conducted into School Bus Stop Arm Violations and nine citations issued. 

This week was National Bus Safety week, and the theme was “Red Lights Mean STOP!” The District’s Transportation Office regularly transports nearly 1,800 students to and from school via school bus every day. As such, making sure that cars come to a complete stop when school buses have their stop signs out is an important safety concern for the District. 

Although this school year began in the remote model of learning for students, the transportation staff have been busy. They have prepared and delivered meals, transported elementary school materials to families, and assisted the Spartan Food Pantry.   

“We have been packing about 525 meals at the high school during the week, and on Monday and Thursdays, we deliver 485 meals door to door weekly,” said Kathy Sheahan, Route Coordinator and Transportation Supervisor. 

The transportation staff has done a phenomenal job at shifting gears and taking on new roles. However, they are excited to begin transporting students again! Starting Wednesday, November 4, 2020, school buses will drive around the community, safely transporting students once again. 

School buses have not been regularly transporting students since March, which may have led many of us to forget our part in keeping students safe when we see a bus. 

“Pay attention to the lights; when the red stop sign comes out, please stop,” said Sheahan. 

“Red Lights Mean STOP!” was the theme for this year’s National Bus Safety week through the National Association for Pupil Transportation. Here are some bus safety tips they recommend talking to your students about: 

 • Have your student put everything they carry in a backpack or school bag so that they won’t drop things along the way. 

 • Practice good pedestrian behavior: walk on the sidewalk, and if there is no sidewalk stay out of the street. If you must walk in the street, walk single file, face traffic, and stay as close to the edge of the road as you can. 

• Stop and look left, right, and then left again if you must cross the street. Do the same thing at drive -ways and alleys. Exaggerate your head turns and narrate your actions so your student knows you are looking left, right, and left. 

For more information on National Bus Safety week and bus stop safety tips, visit napt.org/nsbsw

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